Media Release by Senator the Hon Jan McLucas

Making our homes more accessible for people with disability

The Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Carers, Jan McLucas today highlighted the benefits of designing homes that are more accessible for people with disability at the official launch of Livable Housing Australia in Parliament House, Canberra.

Livable Housing Australia (LHA) is a not-for-profit organisation established to encourage Australians constructing new homes to comply with design standards to meet the changing needs of home occupants across their lifetime.

“Universal housing design is about making our homes easier and safer to live in – for people with a disability, families with young children, people with temporary injuries and senior Australians,” Senator McLucas said

“Incorporating these design principles puts a premium on the property that will assist in resale. There are returns for both homeowners and the broader community.”

“Livable housing means better living and makes good financial sense.”

LHA promotes greater understanding of the value of universal housing design practices and has developed guidelines to help guide the residential and building industry and all levels of government.

“The Livable Housing Design guidelines seek to raise national awareness about the benefits of designing homes for everyone, regardless of abilities.”

“They also provide useful information for consumers seeking to introduce livable design features into their new homes.”

Leaders of the housing industry and disability and ageing sectors are working towards having all new homes built to reflect the new standards by 2020.

They have also committed to a strategic plan that provides a pathway over the next decade to work towards this target.

The Australian Government is investing $1 million to drive this innovative partnership with the building and property sectors to promote universal housing design.

“Livable Housing Australia will take this work to a new level,” Senator McLucas said.